Difficulty of access to land through the formal land supply system has necessitated the shift to other options for accessing land in our cities. These are considered as Informal Land Delivery System (ILDS). Since land is the pedestal upon which the fabric of the city exists and operates, it is pivotal to an efficient and effective urban management. The research set out to: appraise the nature and existing characteristics of ILDS in Karu Urban Area (KUA), identify the urban management problems and prospects of ILDS in KUA, identify the strategies of coping with it, and make recommendations of intervention in the land delivery system for improvement of the urban management of KUA. Data collected and analyzed includes; land provided by the informal land delivery system in KUA, the roles of the actors in the system such as: number of plots sold by landholding households per year, average income generated per year, preference of the system by corporate developers, payment of taxes and levies, etc. The study revealed that approximately 6,396 Ha (63,960 plots of land, using standard measurement of 1000m2) were delivered through the ILDS. The landholding families supplied 74% of the plots of land. This has been accompanied with many challenges for the management of KUA. These include town planning, services and infrastructure provision constraints, etc. Conclusively, there is need to mitigate the challenges as KUA grows into a metropolis with complex uncoordinated systems. Recommendations were made for integrating the land supply systems towards effective urban management and sustainable KUA.
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Land is the foundation of all forms of human activity. From it we obtain the food, shelter and the space to work and relax. Land is amongst man‟s most valuable resources. It is a means of life on which our continued existence and progress depends.
The way and manner through which people acquire land for use vary from one country to another. In Nigeria, before 1978 each region of the country operated different forms of land tenure. The Landuse Decree of 1978 became an instrument of the formal process of access to land by vesting the control of all land with the government.
In many third world cities, urban land can either be obtained formally or informally and the informal sector provides much more land to seekers than the formal sector. Yet the workings of the informal land sector are usually ignored, and are hardly understood or documented.
The rapid growth of urban areas increases demand for land. Statutory methods of land allocation have not adequately met the demand for land for all the income groups. Other informal methods of acquiring land gradually grew into prominence to meet the demand. Several actors participate in this process; including state and local governments, traditional rulers, land agents, landholding households, etc. The response of the informal sector to the ever increasing demand for land, largely for commercial and residential use, has been associated with the sale and subdivision of farm plots, resulting into a complex land management system. Appraisal of this situation has been widely suggested as necessary for improvement as has been attempted in many countries.